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PNB and EPF acquire Battersea commercial property for RM8.3b

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Permodalan Nasional Bhd, the country's largest asset management firm, and state pension fund Employees Provident Fund (EPF) have agreed to jointly acquire the commercial assets at London's Battersea Power Station for RM8.351 billion (GBP 1.58 bilion), both funds said on Monday.

The assets were acquired from a consortium made of property developers SP Setia Bhd and Sime Darby Property Bhd, and EPF, reported Reuters. Both funds own substantial holdings in the property developers. 

The acquisition was targeted to be completed in the first quarter of 2019, the funds said in a joint statement.

The funds had in January proposed to buy the Power Station building within phase two of the development, which consists mainly of retail and office spaces.

Of the 540,000 sq ft (50,168 sqm) of Grade A offices, 500,000 sq ft has been leased to iPhone maker Apple Inc for its new London campus, the statement said.

Battersea Phase 2 is part of the restoration of the iconic Power Station building expected to be completed at the end of 2020 and open to the public in the following year.

Built in the 1930s, the power station stopped operating in 1983 and gradually fell into disrepair. Multiple attempts to redevelop it fell through due to costs and practical difficulties in converting the gigantic site.

Meanwhile, Bernama quoted SP Setia president and CEO Khor Chap Jen saying the sale will bode well with the company’s business plan, as it aimed to play a major role in the project’s overall development.

“We would like to thank all the parties involved in evaluating this acquisition and making this transaction a success. The commitment shown by all demonstrates the confidence in this iconic London landmark development,” he added.

Sime Darby Property group managing director Amrin Awaluddin was also quoted saying that the deal was an important milestone in the development of the Battersea Power Station site, and was pleased to secure the commitment from two of Malaysia’s leading institutions.

- Bernama

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